Measuring Success

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"The best way to measure how much you've grown isn't by inches or the number of laps you can now run around the track, or even your grade point average-- though those things are important, to be sure.

It's what you've done with your time, how you've chosen to spend your days, and whom you've touched this year. That, to me, is the greatest measure of success.”

- Auggie Pullman

R.J. PalacioWonder

School’s almost out! Hooray for summer!

If you’re anything like me, this is the best time of year. No more school, warm, sunshiny days, and, best of all, Camp is right around the corner. (Only 16 days until First Term, if you’re counting.)

But first, this time of year is about wrapping up another school year. Finishing what you started in August or September. Tests and graduations and cleaning out desks or lockers. Final projects and report cards and sports banquets.

Sometimes taking stock like that makes us feel pretty proud of ourselves. We might think, “Got good grades, won an award, had lots of friends, thanked my teacher - Check! Pretty good job, self.”

On the other hand, we might be feeling a little low about the shape of things this year. We might think, “Welp, I couldn’t make the grade, didn’t get invited to that end-of-the-year party, wasn’t recognized for any accomplishments - guess I’m not worth much.”

On one level, your assessment might be a little true. But ultimately, neither of those thoughts gets at what really matters. Being “good” at school doesn’t make you a good person. Being “lame” at sports doesn’t make you a lame person. I love Auggie Pullman’s reminder that success is about something altogether different.

Have you been your best self? Have you tried to be kind? Have you spent time on something you really cared about? Have you said you were sorry? Have you had a hard year and come through to the end of it, still remembering how to smile? Have you reached out to others? Have you grown up? Are you a little more responsible, a little bit wiser, a smidge kinder?

Take stock of that.

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Sarah Hurt

About Sarah Hurt

Sarah Hurt is the Director of Camp DeSoto. She grew up playing in the woods of Lookout Mountain, swimming in Little River, and spending her summers as a DeSoto camper. She loves good stories, twinkle lights, her dog Riley, and Camp DeSoto girls most of all.

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